I last wrote 2 years ago, when my life was at the start of it’s best. I had met the person in my life who filled all the voids and felt no need to write my thoughts down. It is a shame that today I type because 10 long days ago I lost someone so influential and vital from my life.
I moved to Birmingham on Sunday 31st May 2015 after getting married and on Tuesday 2nd June 2015 there was a suspicious knock at the door. Being my first day at home alone in a straaaange city, I admit I was hesitant to open it. So I peeped out the kitchen window blinds and was relieved to see my husband’s cousin’s wife (yes, us Asians like to long out relations – basically my cousin-in-law) standing there smiling. I let her in and we sat and chatted for an hour and half about my wedding, honeymoon and how I felt finally moving to Birmingham. She explained she had come to see me because she knew how it felt to be in a new home; not really sure where to begin with unpacking and how to handle all the new relations. She helped me feel so at ease with my surroundings and reassured me that she also felt she could not cook so I wasn’t alone!!
Fatima Abdulla-Khaku that day didn’t exist for me in my life as an in-law, but a sister and more importantly a friend who I could always rely on. I awaited family dinners so I could always have a natter with her and got super excited when we went out to watch a film at the cinema, even though Fatima without fail always made us late! But honestly, we always had a laugh about it and it was a part of her I really loved. After every drive, we would promise to message each other and go for a run or join a gym so we could lose weight, only to really message each other and say ‘Yeah too busy eating today! LOL next time!’
A week ago I physically said goodbye to Fatima, but she will always be in my heart and in my mind constantly. You may wonder what the reason is for me telling complete strangers about mine and Fatima’s friendship…well it is because the only time I told her with words out loud that I loved her and she was one of the most kind people I had ever met was the day she left us forever. For me, that was far too late but I am grateful I could say the words out loud and tell her what she really meant to me.
We often go through life taking the people we love for granted and although we show them we love them and that is maybe what truly counts, it is so important to tell them too. Life can change in the blink of an eye and people who are in front of us today could be gone tomorrow, so appreciate the good moments and tell the ones you love what they mean to you.
Fatima left us far too quickly but she had a lasting impact on everyone she met. I have no doubt God took her back because He loved her more than us and because she was far too good for this world. The amount of people that came to her funeral and the flowers on her grave are signs themselves of Fatima’s loving and caring nature. She would drop everything to be there when you needed her and she had a glowing smile on her face every time I saw her. She had a way of making you feel like you were the most special person to her, and that is something I take away from her passing…to be kind to everyone I meet.
I will end on a saying which sums up what I have tried to say and what I see Fatima achieved in her 28 years as a daughter, wife, sister, friend and even acquaintance: “Live amongst people in such a manner that if you die they weep over you, and if you are alive they crave for your company” – Imam Ali (as).